Your home is likely the most valuable asset you own. Your decision to renovate it may be driven by your lifestyle and a personal desire to upgrade. At the same time, renovation is an opportunity to protect your investment, and enhance the value of your home.
First, to protect your asset, start with the basics.
Maintenance and repair work
Ongoing maintenance prevents the deterioration of a home and its value. As part of your renovation planning, do a thorough inspection of your home or hire someone to do it.
General wear and tear is often inexpensive to deal with, but can make a big difference to the appearance and appeal of your home. Components, from roofing shingles to furnaces, must be replaced at the end of their lifespan.
It’s crucial to eliminate problems that can damage your home. Moisture problems, for instance, that can also be detrimental to your health, should be dealt with before or at the same time as your renovation, not postponed to later. Cracks in the foundation or brick walls, loose siding, missing mortar, sagging floors or other issues that have developed over time should be attended to, before they create more serious problems.
Next, there are a number of ways you can maximize the value of your renovation investment.
Increasing the energy- and water-use efficiency of your home has both immediate and long-term pay-offs. You will start saving money on your utility bills as soon as the new systems have been installed, while federal and/or provincial grants may help to offset your cost. By “greening” your home, you have also increased its attractiveness and value in case of resale—today’s marketplace puts a premium on energy-saving homes.
Renovating your home to include features that are common in your neighbourhood will increase its value—for instance, a second bathroom, a finished basement or a separate family room. However, renovated homes that “stand out” or are markedly different from neighbouring properties may not realize their full value on resale.
While taste is personal, a well-designed renovation will add greater appeal and value to your home. Spatial considerations are key—layout, traffic flow, visual flow from one area to another, size of rooms and ease of furnishing them, tying new construction seamlessly with the existing home, and so on. Trends come and go—you may want to choose features and finishings with lasting appeal, instead of the latest, hottest items.
Doing it right
There is no substitute for quality work to protect your investment in your home. Hire a professional renovator who has the appropriate experience and the skills for your project. That way, you know the work is done right and will give you lasting satisfaction. Your home will look good and feel good to live in, not just today but for years to come. That’s value that makes a difference!